Progress made by humanity in the Near East and Europe suffered a severe setback after the fall of the Roman empire, and the 6th century saw Europe almost relapse into barbarism once again. Hardly could any Christian read or write; the priestly class enforcing on their followers the motto of Pope Gregory that ‘ignorance is the mother of devotion’, demanded blind obedience to their dogmas. Likewise in Asia, the Hinduism, Buddhism and other cults had deteriorated, becoming mere bundles of outward forms and ceremonial worship. It was at this juncture that the greatest reformer Muhammad, the son of Abdullah bin Abdul Muttalib arose in Arabia. Through his love of knowledge and reverence for learning, mediaeval Europe once more was to become acquainted with art and science and the way was to be paved for the Renaissance. Stanwood Cobb, founder of the Progressive Education Association, states in similar vein:- ‘Islam, impinging culturally upon adjacent Christian countries, was the virtual creator of the Renaissance in Europe.’ (vide ‘Islam’s Contribution to the World Culture’, World Order, 6:202,9/40)


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